Jefferson County, Kentucky
December 12th, 1861
I take my pen in hand to write you a few lines. I am not very well and have not been well since I left home. I have enlisted and been sworn in. I have the promise of an office of some kind as soon as the regiment is organized. We have not been mustered into the United States service yet but we expect to be today or tomorrow and as soon as we are mustered in we will get our horses and uniforms. The boys from our neighborhood are all well but they are dissatisfied about not getting their uniforms sooner. Tell father to do the best he can with my corn. I have not rec’d any money yet but will get some in a few days and I will either bring or send you some. I want to come home if I can as soon as we get some money. You must do the best you can and take care of the children and if any of you get sick let me know it immediately. If I do not come home before next Thursday write and let me know how you are all getting along. This is a big day with us as one Captain is to be married today and two other officers are to fight a duel today. There is five artillery companies camped in sight of us having about forty cannon. They are firing with their cannon every day. When you write direct your letter to Camp Anderson Jefferson County Ky care of I. O. Donnell. So nothing more at present but remaining your affectionate husband until death.
A. A. Harrison
P. S. Tell Martha, Jo is well
Absolom A. Harrison
Company D, 4th Regiment, Kentucky Calvary Volunteers (Union)
A. A. Harrison sent the following letters to his wife Susan Allstun Harrison. Susan’s grandmother was Nancy Lincoln Brumfield, Thomas Lincoln’s sister and President Abraham Lincoln’s aunt.
These letters were transcribed by A. A.’s great-grandson Ronald A. Harrison who introduces the letters with the following background:
“A. A. Harrison and his brother Jo (Joel) apparently got caught up in a recruiting drive and enlisted in the Fourth Kentucky Calvary, U.S.A., without even going home to tell their wives, Susan and Martha. The first letter appears to be letting Susan know what has become of her husband. The two brothers served honorably for roughly a year. At the end of that time A. A. was medically discharged. At roughly the same time Jo died in a military hospital in Nashville. Only recently has anyone in the family known Jo’s fate.”
Letters found on this web page January 2008.